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Sunday, June 29, 2014

2014 TV Weekly Recap (June 22 - June 28)


Sunday June 22

Halt and Catch Fire (AMC), Episode 4 "Close To The Metal"

Brief Description: Halt and Catch Fire tries to take a slight step back from the building of the portable computer and focus on its main three characters, Joe, Gordon, and Cameron, while adding heavy focus and depth to Donna who seemed to be there solely as a cliche nagging wife. H&CF does its best to try and give these characters the most compelling story line possible, but it's just not clicking. The stakes aren't there and the characters aren't that well defined or developed. It does its best by making Joe out to be a villain and he gets beat up by some cops this episode, but I just don't care. This show hasn't done anything to make me truly care about these characters, and it's just not doing anything to suck me in to make me want to continue watching. 

Tuesday June 24

Tyrant (FX), Episode 1 "Pilot"

Brief Description: Truthfully, I have no idea how I feel about Tyrant. I didn't hate it and it passed the iPhone Test where I was more focused on the show than my iPhone, but it also didn't do anything to make me want to stay either. I will continue watching it, but I may give up with it soon along with Halt and Catch Fire. The pilot to Tyrant plays out exactly like the plot of The Godfather. Adam Raynor plays Bassam "Barry" Al-Fayeed and he is the Michael Corrleone character. His father is the Don Vito Corrleone character and the dictator of a fictional Iran/Iraq-esque country. Barry is self-exiled and living in L.A. because he doesn't want to be in the violent business that his father is in. However, and just like in The Godfather, a wedding brings Barry back to his home land, and wouldn't you know it, he gets sucked in and stays a while longer. Barry has an older brother, Jamal, who is a hybrid of Sonny and Fredo. Jamal is the "bad son" who stays and loves to rape and take advantage of his power. A character like Jamal should be a character we all love to hate, but he's so one-dimensional that I never had any feelings for him whatsoever. How I felt about Jamal is how I felt about the pilot to Tyrant as a whole. It's cliche, one-dimensional, under-written, and not that well-acted, but there's also a clear capability to become better and more engaging. Despite all my negativity towards it, I'll continue watching a few more episodes, and I will give this FX show a chance.


Orange Is The New Black (Netflix), Episodes 11-13 of Season 2

Brief Description: My main problem with the episodes I watched last week (episodes 7 -10) was that we were getting late into the season without advancing the main plot. Season 2 is mainly focused on the war between Vee and Red and the middle of the season stalled while we focused on random and unnecessary subplots and characters- and frankly that stall caused me to drop OITNB as my #2 show of 2014 down from #1. However, the end righted the ship, especially with its spectacular 90 minute season finale. The heavy focus of the Red/Vee plots, plus the an interesting Piper story line meant Orange Is The New Black ended on a high note.

Click here for my thoughts on Episode 11 "Take A Break From Your Values"
Click here for my thoughts on Episode 12 "It Was The Change"
Click here for my thoughts on Episode 13 "We Have Manners. We're Polite"


Breaking Bad (AMC), Episodes 4 & 5 of Season 5(b)
"Rabid Dog" & "To'hajiilee"
Service Available to Stream: Netflix

Brief Description: I'm mainly re-watching Breaking Bad's last season (a) because it's freaking excellent and (b) I need to brush up on the show so I can discuss specifics about it for my future Emmy posts in the upcoming months. There's one main thing I noticed as I re-watched these episodes and it's just what a great actor Aaron Paul is. I know he's a great actor from his work on this show as a whole, and it's a shame that he seems to be flaming out in Hollywood, but he is a great actor. However, a few weeks ago, I said if I had an Emmy vote I'd nominate Dean Norris and Bob Odenkirk from this show in the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series category just because I thought Jesse Pinkman was barely in this season. I was wrong and if I had an Emmy vote, I'd swap Odenkirk (whom I do love) for Aaron Paul. (SPOILER ALERT) In these episodes Jesse Pinkman realizes Walt was the one who poisoned Brock, and his anger towards Walt is just phenomenal acting. Jesse storms into Walt's house in an attempt to burn it down, he calmly confesses everything he and Walt did to Hank, and he gets to yell at Walt over the phone about everything. These two episodes (along with the ones earlier in the season) are a great showcase for Aaron Paul.



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